I don't care what my friends from Colorado say, calling herb "flower" is fucking cool, and I will not stop saying it. So this is about one of those rare times when putting the "flame to the killa" may have saved my life. It at the VERY least saved me a bunch of gear.
Ok MAYBE. It's easy for me to say now, with the clarity that hindsight provides. It was just as possible, plausible even, that it would get me thrown in the pokey. Three passes through a border checkpoint ain't no joke, so do not try this at home. Pro tip: A bag inside a coffee can inside a kayak; that's the ticket. The grounds are non negotiable.
We should back this train up and mention how on the first afternoon of the trip, and into the mid morning hours of the next day, it had rained. And by rained I mean it fucking poured. It was a pretty surreal feeling, sitting inside the tent listening to the rain pound the tent walls, knowing all the while this could be very bad news. The evening the rain stopped, we took turns calling our wives via sat phone. "What is the weather doing, it's pretty sketch out here!?" It was still overcast and lightning flashed overhead. Exhausted and a little nervous we hit the sack.
Almost two full days later, I stand up to grab a bag of chocolate covered pretzels out of the fishing bag tied to my kayak, and schlep back to my camp chair. My butt hits the ground and the legs follow. Splash. You can imagine my surprise when I sit down in puddle of water. I must really be tripping.
The water presumably took a day or two to drain into the canyon, and who knows what they got upstream. But this bitch is rising. We quickly raise camp and scale a cliff in the dark; kayaks and all. The river is up 6 feet in no more than ten minutes, and I stand on an overhang thinking, this is what Arlo in The Good Dinosaur must have felt like. Minus an actual wall of water. Thank God it never came. I still wonder how this would have played out if we weren't awake loading that flower. What if our kayaks had been swept away in the dark? What if we had been sleeping in the tent when the water rose? It could have been ugly.
When the sun rose we quickly made our way down stream towards the take out. The top of a sign leading the way is barely visible, with one inch of wooden board nailed to a tree protruding from the water. Several hours pass as we wait for our ride. We hike up a steep desert pass and find a spot to sit. I look down at the river below in total awe and think to myself, Jeff Sessions must be high if he thinks this is what is wrong with America.
I am a passionate outdoorsman with over 25 years of hunting and fishing experience across the state of TX.